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Chriftums (Office of Party Examining Commission for the Protection of National Socialist Publications) (PPK)
The PPK was charged with the censorship and supervision of all literature with cultural or political implications. According to the Party Manual:
“The functional scope of the official Party Examining Commission is not confined to any one group of publications but includes the entire publishing field. Thus the work of the Official Party Examining Commission is sub-divided into departments for books, magazines and newspapers. Out of these main departments a group of important special fields have emerged as more or less independent fields. They are specifically the editing of speeches, scientific books, textbooks, scientific periodicals and the calendar as a special
type of magazine." (2319-PS) The Examining Commission's function was to protect National Socialist literature from attempts to destroy its propagandistic effect or to pervert its political and social content. The Party Manual stated :
“It is the function of the Examining Commission to protect the National Socialist literature from abuse, corruption, and attempts at dissolution. Thus it forestalls the infiltration of elements within the National Socialist literature which
are irreconcilable with it." (2319-PS) In addition, the PPK concerned itself with the actual suppression of literature incompatible with Party tenets, and with the approval of those works which it deemed beneficial to the extension of the National Socialist ideology. The Party Manual speci. fied as follows:
“Particularly it is the function of the official Party Examining Commission to determine whether or not a work can be
considered National Socialist literature." (2319-PS) This office worked in close collaboration with the Delegate of the Fuehrer for the Total Supervision of the Intellectual and Ideological Training and Education of the People (Rosenberg). (2319-PS; 2383-PS)
(5) The Beauftragte des Fuehrers fuer die Ueberwachung der gesamten geistigen und weltansschaulichen Schulung und Erzie. hung der NSDAP (Delegate of the Fuehrer for the Total Supervision of the Intellectual and Ideological Training and Education of the Party) (BDF).
The delegate of the Fuehrer was Reichsleiter Alfred Rosenberg. The Office of the BdF was placed in charge of the Party's
intellectual and ideological training and education. Its declared objective was the uniform ideological orientation of the Party, Party formations, and affiliated associations. Its main functions, in furtherance of this objective, were the preparation of suitable training materials and the issuance of directives thereon; the preparation, editing, and establishment of curricula; the training of qualified teaching staffs; the counseling of Party agencies, formations, and affiliates on content and methods of indoctrination; and the elimination of such reading and teaching materials as were deemed inappropriate from a National Socialist point of view. To perform these tasks, Rosenberg had the assistance of a large organization with numerous functional divisions (2319PS). The BdF took a major part in the work of Party organizations, affiliated associations, and schools and training institutes which were instrumental in the indoctrination of the German people and youth. (2383-PS)
B. The Reich government organization.
The state organ of control was the Reichsministerium fuer Volksaufklaerung und Propaganda (Reich Ministry for Popular Enlightenment and Propaganda). The Minister was Josef Goebbels. The Ministry was founded by decree dated 13 March 1933, which defined its duties as the “enlightenment of, and propaganda among, the people on the subject of the policy of the Reich government and on the national reconstruction of the homeland." (2029-PS). By decree dated 30 June 1933 the functions of the Minister were extended to include "jurisdiction over the whole field of spiritual indoctrination of the nation, of propagandizing the State, of cultural and economic propaganda, of enlightenment of the public at home and abroad; furthermore he is in charge of all institutions serving these purposes.” (2030-PS). In the words of Mueller, an authority on the Propaganda Ministry, these decrees formed the basis for the creation of a central agency for propaganda "the like of which heretofore existed nowhere in the world.” (2434-PS). The influence which this agency exerted on the everyday life and activities of the German citizen was illustrated by the multitude of civic and cultural affairs, including public entertainment, which fell under the sweep of its direction and control. (2434-PS)
A few of the more important departments of the Propaganda Ministry, together with a brief description of their respective functions, follows:
(1) Personnel. This department issued directives for unified
personnel policy, and exercised general supervision over the personnel of public art instituted within the entire Reich.
(2) Law. “The nuclear task of the law department is the publication and execution of national socialist cultural laws. The professions and institutions of literature and art had to be transformed from carriers of a liberal individualistic intellectual movement to the carriers of the tasks of public propaganda and leadership. To reach this goal required the enactment of governmental decrees for creating new organizations or the making of new laws.”
(3) Propaganda. This department coordinated propaganda policies and issued over-all directives to the various functional departments (press, radio, etc.) which then carried out the directives. A special function was “enlightenment of the people as to Jewish question" and as to "racial policies."
(4) Foreign. This department was the Ministry's listening post for political and economic developments abroad "to counteract the worldwide publicity activities of the enemy against our philosophy and our political objectives by exposing and rectifying the lies of the press” and to exploit the information in German propaganda. It also cooperated closely with the Auslandsorganization der NSDAP.
(5) Radio. Hans Fritzsche headed this department. It supervised the political content of German broadcasting, issued directives as to the arrangement of programs and treatment of material, and cooperated with the Party in the technical organization of German radio.
(6) The Film Department was in charge of directing and guiding the German film industry, censoring of films, and developing the German weekly newsreel.
(7) Literature. This agency, in close collaboration with BF and PPK, controlled all German literary activities, censored new books, provided for the publication of German books abroad, and arranged for the translation and censorship of foreign books.
(8) Abteilung Deutsche Presse (German or Home Press Department). This department was headed by Fritzsche until he was relieved in 1942 to take charge of the Radio Division. It was responsible for political control over the entire German press; it controlled the editorial policy of the press and its personnel (through the Reich Press Chamber), and supervised the dissemination of news through the official German News Agency (DNB). The Home Press Division outlined the editorial policy of all newspapers and the comment of editors and journalists in its daily directives. (Tendenz berichte). These dealt with the 685964-46-23
daily contents of the paper, the methods of treatment of news material, the writing of headlines, the preference for or omission of certain items, and the modification or cessation of current campaigns. The directives were issued to the representatives of the press in person or sent through the facilities of the DNB to the local papers. (2434-PS; 2529-PS)
The Home Press Department of the Propaganda Ministry had an important participation in administering the provisions of the Editorial Control Law, which made the profession of editor “a public task, which is regulated as to its professional duties and rights by the state.” That law also included requirements for admission to the profession and other elaborate controls. (2083– PS)
(9) Periodical Literature. This department supervised German periodical literature in the same manner as the Abteilung Deutsche Presse controlled the daily press.
Other divisions exercised supervision over the Theatre (selection and supervision of the entire dramatic production and influencing the programs of all German Theatres); the Arts; Music ("the entire cultural and political leadership of German musical life"); Special Cultural Tasks ("This department serves mainly to eliminate all Jews from German Cultural life"); and Foreign Tourists. (243.4-PS)
A large organization of faithful Party followers was recruited to discharge the manifold functions of the Propaganda Ministry. The staff numbered 1000 persons in 1939-1940. In the words of Mueller:
"It is no accident; therefore, that the great majority of the official workers and other personnel of the Ministry consist of reliable National Socialists of which almost 100 are bearers of the Gold Party Pin." (2434-PS)
C. The semi-autonomous professional organizations Reichskulturkammer (Reich Chamber of Culture).
The Reich Chamber of Culture was set up in September 1933 to control (under the supervision of the Propaganda Ministry and within the framework of general policy directives issued by that activity) personnel engaged in all fields of propaganda (2082-PS). Its tasks as described in the First Executive Decree of the above law, dated 1 November 1933, were:
"To promote German culture as responsible to the people and the Reich, to regulate the social and economic relations of the different groups in the cultural professions and to coordinate their aims." (2415-PS)
The Reichskulturkammer was a so-called "Nachgeordnete Dienststelle" (Subordinate office) of the Propaganda Ministry. Together with its subordinate Chambers it was charged with supervising all personnel active in any field under the jurisdiction of the Propaganda Ministry. All persons employed in the cultural professions were obligated to register with one of the subordinate Chambers. The Chambers were also responsible for investigating the activities and political reliability of their members. Moreover, power was given to Chambers to prosecute members offending against Nazi standards or persons pursuing their occupation without being duly registered. The punitive powers included, expulsion from membership, which was tantamount to the loss of livelihood. The Chambers were also given power to issue directives, which had the validity of law, regulating the cultural activities under their control (2529-PS). The President of the Chamber of Culture was the Minister of Propaganda, Joseph Goebbels, who nominated the Vice-Presidents. In 1937, the latter consisted of Walter Funk, Max Amann (Reich Leader of the Press) and Leopold Gutterer (Secretary of State in the Propaganda Ministry).
The Chamber of Culture was divided into seven functional chambers:
(1) Reichspressekammer (Reich Press Chamber). Max Amann was president of this chamber, which was, to a greater extent than the other chambers, a loose association of technical bodies and organizations, such as the Reich Association of German Newspaper Publishers. It integrated the activities of these groups and, through the composition of its governing body, ensured close coordination with Party and State propaganda machinery. (2529-PS; 3016-PS)
(2) Reichskammer der bildenden Kunste (Reich Chamber of Fine Arts). This chamber supervised the activities of all architects, interior decorators, landscape gardeners, sculptors, painters, draftsmen, art publishers, etc. By 1937, all other art groups and associations had been dissolved, and all their members "obligated by profession” to join this chamber. (2529-PS)
(3) Reichsmusikkammer (Reich Music Chamber). This Chamber was organized to "oversee the practice and activity of musicians in their cultural, economic, and legal relationships with the world.
in order that music will still remain a prized possession of the German people.” (2529-PS)
(4) Reichstheaterkammer (Reich Theater Chamber). The Theater Chamber was the professional organization for the entire field of the professional theater. Its purpose was to super